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NEW! CDC: 2006 Disease Profile (Oct 08)

One in Four People in New York City Have Herpes Virus

HPV Possibly Linked to Lung Cancer

Gum Disease & HPV —  a Double Whammy

CDC: Trends in HIV and STD-Related Risk Behaviors Among High School Students — USA, 1991-2007

AIDS Dot Maps

CDC Understated Number of New HIV Infections in USA…



The CDC’s 2006 Disease Profile outlines the latest data (2006) for HIV/AIDS, viral hepatitis, STDs, and TB and highlights the interrelationships observed between diseases and populations in the United States.

Based on CDC research, this report provides clear, easy-to-use information for presentations, curricula, and research citations.

For this 72 page report, go to
[8 Oct 08,]



CDC: TRENDS IN HIV AND STD-RELATED RISK BEHAVIORS AMONG HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS–UNITED STATES, 1991-2007.  This report summarizes the results of analysis of data from YRBS, which indicated that, during 1991–2007,the percentage of U.S. high school students who ever had sexual intercourse decreased 12%, the percentage who had sexual intercourse with four or more persons during their lifetime decreased 20%, and the percentage who were currently sexually active decreased 7%

In addition, no changes were detected in the prevalence of sexual risk behaviors from 2005 to 2007, and many students still engaged in behaviors that place them at risk for HIV infection and STDs. Additional efforts to reduce sexual risk behaviors, particularly among black, Hispanic, and male students, must be implemented to meet the Healthy People 2010 national health objective for adolescent sexual behaviors (objective no. 25-11) (2) and to decrease rates of HIV infection and STDs
[; posted 5 Aug 08,]

In this series of county-based dot-density maps, the data used are estimated AIDS cases by county, for the 50 US states, Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico, cumulative through 2005.



HPV LINKED TO LUNG CANCER. The human papilloma virus, HPV, has previously been linked to a number of cancers;  now a research team from the United States has presented evidence that HPV infection increases the risk to smokers of developing lung cancer.

Meanwhile, an Israeli team has found that measles — perhaps even asymptomatic infection — seems to be associated with half of the lung cancer cases they tracked.

While the specific viruses at issue — HPV and measles — may not directly cause lung cancer, they seem to aggravate the negative impact of tobacco, American and Israeli researchers say…

"In terms of HPV, our finding is pretty controversial," said the study author, Dr. Arash Rezazadeh, a fellow of medical oncology and hematology at the University of Louisville in Kentucky.

“It's important to know that being infected with this virus does appear to increase lung cancer risk."
[“Possible Viral Links to Lung Cancer Risk Uncovered,” MedlinePlus, 04-25-08,
Abstinence Clearinghouse, 7May08]
Possible Viral Links to Lung Cancer Risk Uncovered: Two studies find connection between measles, HPV and most common lung cancer


Although smoking is well-established as an independent risk factor for lung cancer, two new studies suggest that two different viral infections might boost a smoker's already substantial risk for developing the disease.
While the specific viruses at issue — human papillomavirus (HPV) and measles — may not directly cause lung cancer, they seem to aggravate the negative impact of tobacco, American and Israeli researchers say.
Both findings were presented Friday by separate research teams attending the European Lung Cancer Conference in Geneva.
"In terms of HPV, our finding is pretty controversial," said study author Dr. Arash Rezazadeh, a fellow of medical oncology and hematology at the University of Louisville in Kentucky. "And this is just the beginning of the road. There is much more work to be done. But it's important to know that being infected with this virus does appear to increase lung cancer risk."
As for the role of measles, the second study's lead author, Dr. Samuel Ariad, from the department of oncology at Soroka Medical Center in Beer Sheva, Israel, said that infection — perhaps even asymptomatic infection — seems to be associated with half of the lung cancer cases he tracked.
"Measles virus by itself is unlikely to be carcinogenic," he said. "[But] it probably modifies previous damage to DNA caused by smoking."
Both studies specifically focused on the viral impact on non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) risk. According to the American Cancer Society, 85 percent to 90 percent of all lung cancers are of this variety. Estimates regarding all forms of lung cancer indicate that 215,000 new cases will be diagnosed in the United States this year alone.
In the HPV study, Rezazadeh and his colleagues analyzed lung tissue samples taken from 23 lung cancer patients being treated in Kentucky. Kentucky, they noted, is the state with the highest rate of adult and teenage smoking in the United States, as well as the highest rate of NSCLC.
Among the patients — all of whom were smokers — five were found positive for infection with a variety of HPV strains.
The authors said this frequency of infection "sup

ports the assumption that HPV contributes to the development of NSCLC." They point out that HPV is already known to be the cause of all cases of cervical cancer, a vaccine for which has recently become available. It has also recently been implicated as a possible cause for head and neck cancer.
Further studies are planned to look for signs of HPV infection in the respiratory tract of lung cancer patients and to explore the possibility for using HPV infection as a screening indicator for the disease.
In the measles study, Ariad and his team analyzed lung tissue samples taken from 65 Israeli lung cancer patients between the ages of 40 and 84. Ninety percent were smokers, and most were in the early stages of the disease.
The authors found evidence of measles infection in 54 percent of the patients. The likelihood of viral infection, they observed, went up with age.
They concluded that "a possible association" exists between measles and NSCLC.
Dr. Len Lichtenfeld, deputy chief medical officer of the American Cancer Society, described both research efforts as "interesting." But he cautioned that more research needs to be done on each front.
"The question I have for the measles association has to do with vaccination, since in the U.S., at least, we have near universal coverage," he noted. "So although the measles vaccine may lose some of its effectiveness over time, it would be interesting to know if this finding would apply to a country such as ours where most people are vaccinated."
"But I think the HPV study is the more interesting of the two," Lichtenfeld added, "since HPV is obviously already implicated in other cancers. But this is a small study, and it only suggests a possible link to lung cancer without answering a lot of questions. I would like to know, for example, whether patients who are not smokers but who develop lung cancer have a higher rate of HPV. But for now, I would not yet conclude that HPV increases risk, nor would I tie the HPV vaccine to any risk." [“Possible Viral Links to Lung Cancer Risk Uncovered,” MedlinePlus, 04-25-08,]
 [HealthDay, 25April2008 (HealthDay News]


GUM DISEASE & HPV: A DOUBLE WHAMMY. The two work in tandem to increase risk of tongue cancer, study shows
Your risk of developing tongue cancer increases if you have severe gum disease along with human papillomavirus (HPV), new research suggests.
Previous studies have found periodontitis, which destroys connective tissue and bone supporting the teeth, and HPV each pose increased risks of cancer in the head, neck or tongue. This new study, from researchers at the University at Buffalo School of Dental Medicine, shows the two may work in tandem.
In a study of 30 patients newly diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma on the base of the tongue, 63 percent (19 patients) had tumors testing positive for a common type of HPV. In addition, 90 percent of the patients with HPV-positive tumors had periodontitis, and 79 percent of patients whose tumors showed no presence of HPV did not have periodontitis.
"Evidence of periodontitis-HPV synergy has important practical implications, because there is a safe treatment for periodontitis but no treatment for HPV infection," Mine Tezal, an assistant professor in the dental school's Department of Oral Diagnostic Sciences, said in a prepared statement.

"If these results are confirmed by other studies, this has a tremendous relevance in predicting and intervening in the initiation and prognosis of HPV-related diseases, including head and neck cancers."
Tezal, who is also a research scientist at Roswell Park Cancer Institute, is scheduled to present the finding Friday at the American Association of Dental Research annual meeting, in Dallas.
Most people contract HPV infection at least once in their lives, but one's immune system often fights it off without incident.
"Persistence of HPV infection is the strongest risk factor for carcinogenesis," Tezal said.

"Thus, the identification of factors that influence the persistence of HPV infection is critical to facilitate efforts to prevent head and neck cancers. This study implicates that chronic inflammation and co-infection with oral bacteria may be significant factors in the natural history of HPV infection." [4April08, HealthDay News, By Kevin McKeever,]




ONE IN 4 PEOPLE IN NEW YORK CITY HAVE HERPES VIRUS: City health department plans to throw more condoms at the crisis.
More than a quarter of the residents of New York, the city that never sleeps, now live with genital herpes, contracted through freewheeling sexual promiscuity. A new report from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene shows that the restless inhabitants of the city have higher rates of infection from sexually transmitted diseases than the rest of the United States.

Health officials announced Monday that 26% of adult New Yorkers have been infected with Herpes Simplex Virus-2 (the virus responsible for genital herpes), while the national average has declined to 19%.

By ethnicity, more blacks than whites in the city were afflicted with the disease (49% versus 14%). New York women also suffer much higher rates of infection than men (36% versus 19%). However, the rate of infection for men engaging in homosexual acts was nearly double the rate of heterosexual men (32% versus 18%).

Genital herpes infections post a serious concern for city health officials, since the disease greatly helps to spread HIV infection. In fact, rates of HIV infection in the city are increasing within the male homosexual population.

City officials have announced that they will throw more condoms at the health crisis.

"Genital herpes alone will not cause serious problems for most people," said Dr. Julia Schillinger, Director of Surveillance for the Health Department's Bureau of STD Prevention and Control and lead author of the study. "But some people will have painful genital sores and the infection fosters the spread of HIV. We advise New Yorkers to protect themselves and others. Using condoms consistently will help you avoid getting or spreading genital herpes."

Despite the current glut of free condoms in the city of 19.3 million, with over 48 million condoms being distributed to New Yorkers since 2007, the Health Department received more than 65,000 reports of sexually transmitted infection in 2007 alone, and rates of gonorrhea, chlamydia, and infectious syphilis also have risen above the national average.

The city's findings are published in the June edition of the journal Sexually Transmitted Diseases. The study's data come from the city's 2004 Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NYC HANES), which used door-to-door interviews and in-person medical exams of a representative sample of New York adults 20 and older to determine the health status of New Yorkers.


Study Shows 26 Percent of U.S. Teenage Girls Have STD

New STD Infection Rates "4 times higher among those who used condoms during their last vaginal intercourse": Study

Medical Journalist Says Reliance on Condoms Spreads HIV/AIDS

United Nations Report says Condoms Fail to Protect against AIDS 10% of the Time:Report a blow to those who maintain condoms provide 100% protection
[10June08, Peter J. Smith, New York,]




NYC’S CONDOM CAMPAIGN REVEALS 1 IN 4 NEW YORKERS HAS HERPES. New York City had a big STD problem before they let loose with last year's "Get Some" condom distribution campaign, but how could they think it would lower infection rates to encourage more sex?

Now the news is in: one in four (25%) of New Yorkers is infected with genital herpes, compared to 19% nationally.

Herpes doubles the risk of infection with HIV/AIDS.

Other STDs are also more common in NYC than nationwide.

Reminder: One reason condoms do not offer reliable protection from many STDs is because the infections are transmitted in multiple ways, including skin-to-skin contact.(Source: "Study: 1 in 4 adults in NYC have herpes virus," AP, 06-09-08,; NAC, 9June08)





CDC UNDERSTATED THE NUMBER OF NEW HIV INFECTIONS IN THE US. The number of Americans infected by the AIDS virus each year is much higher than the government has been estimating, U.S. health officials reported, acknowledging that their numbers have understated the level of the epidemic.

The country had roughly 56,300 new HIV infections in 2006 — a dramatic increase from the 40,000 annual estimate used for the past dozen years.

The new figure is due to a better blood test and new statistical methods, and not a worsening of the epidemic, officials said.

But it likely will refocus U.S. attention from the effect of AIDS overseas to what the disease is doing to this country, said public health researchers and officials.

"This is the biggest news for public health and HIV/AIDS that we've had in a while," said Julie Scofield, executive director of the National Alliance of State and Territorial AIDS Directors.

Experts in the field, advocates and a former surgeon general called for more aggressive testing and other prevention efforts, noting that spending on preventing HIV has been flat for seven years.

The revised estimate by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the methodology behind it were to be presented Sunday, the opening day of the international AIDS conference in Mexico City.

Since AIDS surfaced in 1981, health officials have struggled to estimate how many people are infected each year. It can take a decade or more for an infection to cause symptoms and illness.

One expert likened the new estimate to adding a good speedometer to a car. Scientists had a good general idea of where the epidemic was going; this provides a better understanding of how fast it's moving right now.

"This puts a key part of the dashboard in place," said the expert, David Holtgrave of Johns Hopkins University.

Judging by the new calculations, officials believe annual HIV infections have been hovering around 55,000 for several years.

"This is the most reliable estimate we've had since the beginning of the epidemic," said Dr. Julie Gerberding, the CDC's director. She said other countries may adopt the agency's methodology.

According to current estimates, around 1.1 million Americans are living with the AIDS virus. Officials plan to update that number with the new calculations but don't think it will change dramatically, a CDC spokeswoman said.

The new infection estimate is based on a blood test that for the first time can tell how recently an HIV infection occurred.

Past tests could detect only the presence of HIV, so determining which year an infection took place was guesswork — guesswork upon which the old 40,000 estimate was based.

The new estimate relies on blood tests from 22 states where health officials have been using a new HIV testing method that can distinguish infections that occurred within the past five months from those that were older.

The improved science will allow more real-time monitoring of HIV infections. Now, CDC officials say, the estimate will likely be updated every year.

Yearly estimates allow better recognition of trends in the U.S. epidemic. For example, the new report found that infections are falling among heterosexuals and injection drug users.

Some experts celebrated that finding, saying it's a tribute to prevention efforts, including nearly 200 syringe exchange programs now operating in 36 states despite a federal ban on funding for such projects.

But they also lamented the CDC's finding that infections continue to increase in gay and bisexual men, who accounted for more than half of HIV infections in 2006. Also, more than a third of those with HIV are younger than 30.

Some advocates say that suggests a need for more prevention efforts, particularly targeting younger gay and bisexual men…

Some said more attention needs to focus on prevention among blacks, who account for nearly half of annual HIV infections, according to the new CDC report.

A recent report by the Black AIDS Institute concluded that if black Americans were their own nation, they would rank 16th in the world in the number of people living with HIV.

"We have been inadequately funding this epidemic all along. We need to step it up," said former U.S. Surgeon General Dr. David Satcher, who is now an administrator at Atlanta's Morehouse School of Medicine.

The new estimate has been anticipated for a long time. The CDC began working on the new methods nearly seven years ago.

Late last year, advocates said they had heard the figure was about 55,000 and pressed the CDC to release it. Agency officials declined, saying they were submitting their research for medical journal review.

"These are extremely complicated statistical methods," and CDC officials wanted the work to be thoroughly reviewed by outside experts, Gerberding said. The CDC's findings are being published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Until 19

92, the number of diagnosed AIDS cases was used to predict how many people were newly infected each year. That method produced an estimate of 40,000 to 80,000. More recently, the CDC focused on infections among men who have sex with men, who account for about half of new HIV diagnoses.  [8/2/2008, AP, M Stobbe, Atlanta,]